Thursday, October 21, 2004

Think you're tough, eh?

I've downloaded various training plans for marathons, half-marathons, 10-Ks and the like, and the first week is always a doddle. Or it reads that way, until someone as sedentary as myself starts trying to jog for 15 minutes.
Good grief. I've spent most of life trying to avoid pain, and suddenly, here I am deliberately inflicting it on myself. I wasn't prepared for the fear, though. When I was a youngster, being forced to run, jump, climb ropes and generally exhaust myself at the behest of Marr College gym teachers Bryan Gilbert and 'Papa' Keir Hardie ( grandson or great grandson, I believe, but posh) there was always the sense of physical invulnerability. Now, jogging along the Ness of Hillswick, every step (even cushioned by peat and grass) bone-jarring and heart-palpitating, there is the worry that proof of coronary heart disease might come slamming in at any moment.
At my considerable age (48), it's possible that even grass-damped running could damage my joints. So cycling may be the least impactful (is there such a word?) option. and besides, I love cycling. I love bicycles. They are, as Joe Breeze, American bike guru says, possibly the most beautiful and elegant result of human ingenuity.
Meanwhile, as hurricane force winds gather around Shetland, and I huddle away pretending to exercise on my turbo-trainer, I think of this lot
... and shiver in admiration.

1 comment:

Peter McGill said...

I too was taught by "Papa" Keir Hardie in the 60s at Marr College,and I once had the temerity to ask him if he was related to the founder of the Labour Movement.
"Yes," he replied. "He was my great uncle."

So there you have it Tom - from the horse's mouth, so to speak. But Horsey Wilson is another story, forsooth!
Pete McGill